Robyn Jones OBE, founder of CH&Co, passed away yesterday following a long illness.
Until very recently and despite her ill health, Jones continued to be actively involved in many aspects of the company and the wider industry. Her loss will be felt by many people in CH&Co, the hospitality industry, and the wider business community.
Jones founded Charlton House, as it was then called, in 1991 from the back bedroom of her house. In the following years, she and her husband Tim, who joined as chairman in 2000, built it up to be one of the largest independent foodservice companies in the UK, with an annual turnover of £120 million. This year, they merged their company with Host Catermasters retaining the CH&Co name.
Jones won a host of personal accolades throughout her career including a Catey; in 2011, she was appointed OBE in HM Queen’s New Year’s Honours list. She took an active role in many charities and industry organisations.
Bill Toner, chief executive of CH&Co Group, said:
“Robyn was truly indomitable, never letting anything get in her way. Not only did she develop a wonderful company that was well-known for its exacting food, standards and service, she developed a skilled team who have all gained significantly from her leadership. She will be hugely missed.”
Caroline Fry, deputy group CEO, who worked with Jones for 21 years, added:
“Robyn was an inspiring woman to work for. Her vision, determination, style and guidance helped me and many others develop our careers in more ways than we could have imagined. She was always a firm believer in the abilities of her people and her legacy continues in CH&Co Group. We will miss her enormously.”
Robyn is survived by her husband Tim, and their children, Tabitha and Blake.